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Building a Muslim Empire

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Presentation on theme: "Building a Muslim Empire"— Presentation transcript:

1 Building a Muslim Empire
Can it be done after the death of Muhammad?

2 Early Challenges to Islam
Muhammad dies without naming a successor Eventually the community agrees to Abu Bakr- Muhammad’s father-in-law and early convert to Islam, should be the first caliph, or successor to Muhammad. Bakr tells the faithful, “If you worship Muhammad, Muhammad is dead. If you worship God, God is alive.”

3 Arabs Unite under Islam
Some Arabs refuse to follow Abu and withdraw their loyalty to Islam. Battles between tribes begin but Abu is able to reunite the Muslims. Now they begin military campaigns to convert the remaining Arab tribes to Islam.

4 Early Victories Byzantines and Persians (2 great empires) fighting for control of Arab lands. But now with the Arabs united they conquer parts of the Byzantine empire and defeat the Persians. The Arabs take over Palestine and Jerusalem.

5 Divisions emerge within Islam
Sunni Believe any good Muslim could lead the community. Later compromise that the leader should come from Muhammad’s tribe. The successor is called a caliph. This compromise group is the majority of Muslims today. 90% Shiite Believed that Muhammad’s son-in-law, Ali, should be his successor. He and his wife are divinely inspired religious leaders. 10% I need to know this!!

6 What divides them? Same Believe in the same God.
Look to the Quran for guidance. Follow the Pillars of Islam. Different Religious practice- amount of prayer Law- Sunnis more liberal and want leaders to be elected Daily life- marriage rules and inheritance

7 Another group- Sufis Sufis- Muslim mystics who sought communion with God through meditation, fasting and other rituals. Carried the faith to remote villages. Whirling dervishes dance as a form of prayer. Let’s watch

8 Umayyad Caliphs Build an Empire
After death of Ali, a Meccan clan sets up the Umayyad caliphate- a dynasty of Sunni caliphs that will rule the Muslim empire until 750. Many conquests from Spain to India.

9 Expanding the Muslim Empire
Conquer N. Africa 711- conquer Spain 731- parts of France Fail to take over the Byzantine capital of Constantinople.

10 Reasons for Muslim Success
Persian and Byzantine empires weakening. Muslims seen as liberators from older harsh empires. Bold fighting methods with the camel and horse cavalry. Muslim armies had a desire to glorify their religion.

11 Conquered People Are Treated Fairly
Taxed non-Muslims Christians, Jews allowed to practice their own faith and follow their own laws. Jews and Christians play key roles as officials, doctors and translators. But they urged Arab settlers to separate themselves and this created an Arab upper-class. People liked the idea that there was equality of all believers, regardless of race, gender, class and wealth

12 Decline of the Umayyad Caliphate
Problems Had to adapt from desert living to ruling large cities. Arabs given more privileges Problems between rich and poor Lavish lifestyle of the caliphs

13 Rise of the Abbasids Discontented Muslims find a leader in Abu al-Abbas. Captures Damascus Kills Umayyad family He then founded the Abbasid dynasty which lasts until 1258.

14 Changes Dynasty based on equality of all Muslims
Stopped military conquests Discrimination of non-Arab Muslims ended Encouraged learning Capital moved to Baghdad

15 Baghdad- the new capital
Walls formed a circle with the palace in the middle Big in size and wealth Many markets, gardens and mosques. Domes and minarets- slender towers of the mosques loomed overhead 5 times a day they climb to the tops of the minarets and call the faithful to prayer.

16 Muslim culture in Spain
One surviving member of the Umayyad family goes to Spain and starts an independent Muslim state Tolerant of other religions The fortified palace of Alhambra built

17 Muslim Empire Declines
Power fading in Egypt and elsewhere Shiite’s coming to power in places Invasions leading to chaos

18 Seljuk Turks take control
Moving in from central Asia Seljuk sultan- ruler controls Baghdad Conflicts develop and prevent Christian pilgrims from traveling to Jerusalem This leads to the first Crusade

19 Now it’s the Mongols 1216 the Mongols and Genghis Khan move across SW Asia 1258 Baghdad burned and looted Mongols would later adopt Islam

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